There is no self-respecting mobile device that does not have WiFi connectivity. Be it a laptop, a mobile phone, or a tablet, all of them offer the possibility to connect to the Internet via WiFi, and when it does not work, oh, when it does not work! You feel a tingling in the body that tells us that your device has just become a useless piece of junk.
12 tips to improve the signal of your WiFi router
Therefore, if you have a wireless Internet connection at home, you want it to be as stable and powerful as possible. How can you get it? That is the question! Below, we have compiled some of the best methods to increase the power and range of your WiFi router.
1- WiFi AX, AC, and N better than WiFi A, B, and G
The first tip to increase the strength and range of your WiFi signal is to use the latest technologies available to improve the range of your wireless signal. Technologies based on the 802.11a, 802.11b, or 802.11g standards are significantly less powerful than those based on 802.11n and 802.11ac. And if you have a router compatible with the latest protocol, known as WiFi 6 ( 802.11ax ), all the better, as it offers 4 times better performance than WiFi 5 (802.11ac).
Keep in mind that in order to use this type of WiFi network you will need a WiFi router and a network card that support these technologies.
2- Find the best location for your router
We know that routers are quite ugly and that as a decoration item they leave a lot to be desired, but if you want to have a better signal quality you will have to do the following:
- Put the router in an open place.
- Move it away from the walls of the room.
- Place the antennas of the router in a perpendicular position.
- Elevate the router as high as possible.
- Try to leave the router in the most central room of your house.
3- Find the best wireless channel
When your router emits the WiFi signal, it operates on a specific frequency and channel. Therefore, if you have neighbors around, it is very likely that their own routers create interference in your signal.
To solve this problem, you must look for a range that is free of interference and allows your router to broadcast without noise that weakens its signal. Apps like WiFi Analyzer let you track to see which channels are free. This way, you can configure your router to work through those less saturated channels.
4- Avoid interference from other devices
Not only your neighbor’s routers create interference in your signal. Other household devices such as cordless phones, microwaves, and the like can weaken the power of your WiFi. The solution to this problem could be buying phones that operate on other frequencies or dual band routers. On the other hand, if you don’t want to spend money, you can always try to keep your phone and microwave as far away from the router as possible.
5- Beware of WiFi thieves
Even if your WiFi connection has a password, it can be really easy to hack. Therefore, not only should you have at least one WPA key, but you should also increase the security of your router.
One of the easiest ways to detect intruders on your network is to install the Wireless Network Watcher program. This is a tool that performs a network scan and allows you to see all the connected devices at a glance.
6- Control the applications that eat up your bandwidth
Streaming applications such as Netflix, online games, or P2P downloads are real bandwidth hogs, and make the Internet connection much slower for the rest of the users on your network.
Do not worry! You can configure the QoS (Quality of Service) in your router to determine which type of applications consume more bandwidth and which less, in such a way that you can ensure that the applications you want do not remain offline.
7- Check the rest of the router configuration settings
It is always interesting to enter the router’s administration menu and review the current configuration. In this way, it is possible to detect possible improvements and even configuration errors. For example, if you have a router with the capacity to emit signals with the WiFi 6 (802.11ax) protocol, but in the WLAN connection settings, you have activated the 802.11b, 802.11g, or 802.11n mode, without a doubt you are wasting the potential of your router.
In such a case, it would be enough to activate the AX mode to significantly enhance the quality and range of the signal.
Each router has a different interface, but it’s all a matter of going in and taking a look to see if there is something that catches your eye. For example, routers also allow you to configure DNS servers to manage access to the Internet. If you have configured an alternative DNS, try to eliminate said configuration, since it could be slowing down internet browsing.
8- Increase bandwidth with homemade inventions
If you still notice that your router does not reach every corner of your house, you can always opt for crafts and create your own little inventions to increase the power of your router. Tricks such as using a kitchen strainer, cardboard covered in aluminum foil, or a soda can attached to your router to increase its power are the order of the day and, in addition to being fun, they are very effective.
9- Increase the signal of your router with a little hack
This is already something riskier. You can increase the power of your router by installing the DD-WRT firmware. What this firmware does is increase the capabilities of your router and give it that extra push it needs.
Most routers can handle up to a maximum of 70 mW, so be very careful if you don’t want to end up with your router in the trash. If you want to know more about the DD-WRT firmware, there is a large community on the subject.
10- Turn your old router into a repeater
Do you have an old router that you don’t use at all? Turn it into a homemade repeater. Place it in that area of the house where the signal is weak and you can enjoy a higher quality bandwidth.
11- Schedule your router to automatically restart periodically
Surely you are one of those who has to restart your router every x amount of time because at a certain point it stops working as it should, right? Well, you’re not the only one! It’s weird that you don’t have to do it from time to time like everyone else.
A good option to maintain the quality of your wireless signal is to program certain automatic restarts (if possible at night) so that the power does not drop at any time. How? One of the easiest solutions is to install the aforementioned DD-WRT firmware, but you can also go into your router’s settings and see if it offers this functionality natively.
12- An extra tip: check the wireless characteristics of your devices
Once you have finished reviewing everything that can be reviewed, it is always a good idea to take a look at the other end of the connection: that is, the mobile or device that is connecting to the Wi-Fi network.
For example, if we have a router with Wifi 6 AX but your device is only capable of working with Wifi 5 signals, you will not be able to take advantage of the full power of the router. Something that you could solve by updating your devices for other devices that are compatible with these new technologies. Obviously, this requires an economic outlay, so it is not a solution you can apply lightly.
However, this also works in reverse. In other words, if you have devices capable of connecting to Wi-Fi 6 networks, you can buy a new router that includes this technology. Something that would undoubtedly be much cheaper than renewing all the wireless devices you have at home.